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Usyk vs AJ: Evander Holyfield says Anthony Joshua must fight Oleksandr Usyk like a ‘big brother’ in rematch | boxing news


Heavyweight great Evander Holyfield believes Anthony Joshua must fight Oleksandr Usyk as if he were the Ukrainian’s ‘big brother’ when the duo meet in Saturday’s world title rematch.

If the analysis surrounding Joshua’s hopes of reclaiming his WBO, WBA and IBF belts felt slightly repetitive, that’s because it was, and for obvious reasons. A more aggressive version of the two-time world champion is expected in Jeddah this weekend as he looks to offer Usyk a different challenge to September when intentions to take out the tricky southpaw were foiled.

Holyfield is among the latest to urge the Londoner to make his natural size and power felt on the night.

Usyk vs. Joshua 2: weigh-in

Friday August 19 12:30 p.m.

“He has to fight like a big guy. He can’t sit back and score with this guy, he has to hit him with big punches,” Holyfield said. Sky sports.

“If you have a little brother. If you try to keep up he moves too much you gotta grab him and put all that weight on him and make him feel like you’re the strongest and it’s a great fight guys and there’s no way he can beat you in a big guy fight.

“I know both guys are capable of winning, it’s just who does it that night when the pressure comes on. The thing is how a person thinks. I knew what my thinking was going to be in there.

“I always said every guy that had the best of me was a lighter guy than me with quick hands, I sat there watching. But that’s what big guys used to do. when they were in front of me, I was so good that they sat there watching and then the fight was over.”

“It’s not impossible [for Joshua], all it takes is one shot with him. The point of the question – is he going to be aggressive enough to come out and do it?”

Holyfield himself is no stranger to a rematch environment, having notably made adjustments to avenge his opening loss to Riddick Bowe in the second fight of their trilogy.

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“Bowe was a boxer and a puncher, he was a big guy,” added the former world champion. “The first fight, because me and him were good buddies, I talked to him too much so we shared too much information.

“So he tells me when the fight starts, ‘if you don’t run, I’m going to knock you out.

“I didn’t run, I took him toe to toe and so as he was bigger he threw the bigger punches which made me not run out of gas but made me to fall.

“The second time I moved, he couldn’t follow me, then I beat him.

“Of course, if you go with a bigger guy who’s a bigger puncher than you and he hits you more than you hit him, you’re going to get tired because you have all that weight on you.”

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Watch Joshua’s full public workout ahead of his rematch with Usyk

Usyk followed in Holyfield’s footsteps by trading his life as world heavyweight champion to reign atop the heavyweight division.

Reflecting on the transition, Holyfield explained: “I wouldn’t say it’s easy, because you have to take everything you need to be a fighter.

“The art of the game is boxing and the boxer will always have the advantage unless he is knocked out.

“That’s what boxers do – boxing. And boxing is ‘you’re gonna hit that guy more times than that guy’s gonna hit you’, and if it goes the distance, you’re gonna exceed them.

“But if you’re a big puncher, what can a big puncher do? I’ll get you out of here.”

Anthony Joshua’s huge heavyweight rematch against Oleksandr Usyk will take place on Saturday August 20, live on Sky Sports Box Office. Book Usyk vs. Joshua 2 now!



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